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March 10, 2012

Andy Roddick


4‑6, 7‑6, 6‑3

THE MODERATOR:  Questions, please.

Q.  One you're happy to get through?
ANDY RODDICK:  I played better‑‑ my opinion, it was just returns all day.  You know, he served 47% in the first set and didn't face a break point.  That just tells me I'm not doing my job on second serve.
For whatever reason, once I got down that break in the second I started putting pressure on every service game he had and broke like four times from then from not breaking at all for the first hour and 45 I was out there.
To me, it seems pretty clear cut as to what was the difference.

Q.  Were you surprised or not surprised that serving for the match he came in on two first and two second serves, not surprised at all?
ANDY RODDICK:  Not really, no.  He had been coming in on pretty much everything and I hadn't been able to put a return ‑‑ I don't know‑‑ in the first two sets I couldn't have hit a return into the ocean from the beach, much less on a tennis court.
I'm not really that surprised by it.  You know, I think, you know, if he gets side from the baseline, I think his bailout is going forward a little bit.
You know, you can't really criticize for doing something when it's been working for two hours in the afternoon, you know.

Q.  So how did you put it down?  What worked for you in the end?
ANDY RODDICK:  I started swinging out of my returns a little more.  You know, that was all the difference.  You know, I had to have hit 10 winner returns from that point down in the second, and then, you know, the rest was‑‑ I don't feel like I lost a lot of baseline rallies today.
You know, my serve went as my percentages did.  Still a little inconsistent, but better.
You know, it was just a matter of making him pay for not making first serves, and I did not do that at all early in the match and then I did it well‑‑ I mean, it was like a line in the sand.  It went from terrible to good, you know, for whatever reason.

Q.  For whatever reason, when something like that happens, do you know why it's happening?
ANDY RODDICK:  Yeah, I mean, I made a little bit of an adjustment, but, you know, almost too late.

Q.  You don't often face guys who serve and volley which makes the return game entirely different.  It seemed like when you were getting his first back, you were doing fairly well there.  Do you change your mentality at all?  I guess certain things probably don't matter as much when you are facing a baseliner.
ANDY RODDICK:  Yeah, I mean, you still want to stick your return.  You're not going to get away with the kind of cheesy laying the ball back on the second serve.  He's coming in and he's downwind.  Stepping back and trying to find, you know, some space and rhythm, getting the ball in the air isn't much of an option.
So it takes away your options a little bit, but it makes a good return even better if he's coming in.  So, you know, I couldn't‑‑ I wasn't sticking any returns early, and then it came around.

Q.  In most sports, team sports, you have your team members around you to huddle up or talk in the dugout.  Tennis is such an individual and mental sport.  Could you talk about the whole process of self‑talk over hours in a match?  What's that like?
ANDY RODDICK:  Yeah, well, after a match like today you kinda sick of yourself by the end of it.  Yeah, I mean, I think that's what makes tennis unique.  You know, for all the kind of general sports talk, I don't think it gets its due as far as physicality, as far as endurance, as far as on and off, you can't pass the ball off.
You know, you are out there exposed by yourself, you know, playing pretty terrible tennis for an hour and a half in front of 16,000 people who are ‑‑ all they want you to do is play better.
So it is a sport that maybe doesn't get its due as far as, you know, some things physical.  I mean, you play, you know, in extreme conditions a lot of the time also.  So there are a lot of things that are going on in a tennis match that I don't feel like translate to watching it go back and forth on the TV very well sometimes.

Q.  Do you ever want to tell yourself, Be quiet and shut it down?
ANDY RODDICK:  Well, that would kind of be contradictory if I was thinking be quiet but then telling myself speaking out loud also.
So that would get into a whole other thing of confusion.

Q.  That 5‑4 game when he served for it and you broke him at love, so you're going in there and you just say, Well, that's all right; now I'm just going to hit it?
ANDY RODDICK:  No, I mean, you try to do the same thing.  Listen, I don't have much of an explanation for it.  It wasn't like I had an epiphany out there all of a sudden.
I won the first point.  He hit a bad volley for the firsttime in a while.  I stuck one return, and all of a sudden it's Love‑30; at Love‑40 I playeda great point and stuck a return and made a backhand.
Why all of a sudden it happened four points in a row?  You know what?  If you can know why everything happened in sports all the time, then it would be a lot easier and would probably less fun to watch, to be honest.

Q.  Given, you know, the struggles with the injuries and getting rhythm this year in general, I know he isn't the best player in the world, but just to kind of get through there, good player, kind of sneak it out and come from the break down in the second; pretty good stuff?
ANDY RODDICK:  Yeah, I mean, those are the matches I've made a career on was winning even when you're not playing great.
You know, I've lost a couple of those, you know, recently.  So to get through one to kinda‑‑ I don't feel like I've stolen a match in a while.  I don't feel like‑‑ and I did today.  It felt right.
I don't feel like I've gotten a let cord, and I got a let cord return to break.  That felt fantastic and I wasn't sorry at all, even though I said I was.  (Laughter.)
But, you know, things like that, it felt good to kinda get one of those.

Q.  Berdych.  Can you talk about next round a little bit?
ANDY RODDICK:  Yeah, he's a better player at the moment.  We played in Kooyong.  We know each other pretty well.  We played a lot over the last couple of years.  I think I've gotten him more than he's gotten me.  You're not gonna want to leave the ball hanging or let him get set.
You kinda have to mix some things up so he doesn't get a rhythm.  Once he starts kinda going and feeling good, he hits the ball so clean you kinda have to take him out of that a little bit.

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